What do you get when you mix 30,000 pieces of existing exterior façade stone, a quarry that is no longer in use, and a team of 13 AEC and trade professionals from around the globe? You get the prestigious 2016 Grande Pinnacle Award from the MIA+BSI for the exterior restoration of the Minnesota State Capitol Building in St. Paul.
Good companies are always looking for ways to add value for their customers. The best ones are able to grow their business while doing it. Bahler Brothers, a design-build firm in Connecticut, has discovered that outdoor lighting adds substantial value to their masonry projects. Combining masonry and lighting extends the hours their customers can enjoy their outdoor living area. This was the case with a recent Bahler Brothers installation in Massachusetts that won a 2016 Hardscape North America Project Award in one of the residential categories.
The front yard of a charming, craftsman-style home in central New Jersey, built in 1926, has a winding front walkway of interlocking pavers around a lighted koi pond with a natural stone waterfall. Connecting to a side driveway of interlocking concrete pavers the path leads to a rear deck and detached garage. Hardscape lighting was important to the long-time owners, a senior couple who sought needed demarcation for safety, in addition to desired visual aesthetics and curb appeal. The small footprint and understated, 2 -inch round design of Evening Star® paver lights provided both of these benefits in a low-voltage, accent lighting option for all paved areas around the home.
Mesa Community College (MCC) in Mesa, Ariz., serves the academic needs of nearly 26,000 students by offering more than 200 degrees and certificates in everything from biotechnology, computer science, and dental hygiene to mortuary science and urban horticulture. However, it was a re-dedication to music and the arts that gave birth to a new Performing Arts Center, acoustically fine-tuned with an inner and outer shell of sound-reflective masonry.
All matter breaks down over time. The structures that surround us today are no exception to that law of physics. Some building materials are more durable than others, but unfortunately the days of structures surviving thousands of years, like the Egyptian pyramids and Roman cathedrals, is over. Most of the structures erected today have a life expectancy of less than 100 years. Therefore, preventive maintenance of building exteriors has become more important than ever.
Flashings remain a critical component of any cavity wall system, diverting moisture outward as it collects in the cavity space to the exterior of the façade through the weep openings. A failure in this arrangement can ultimately lead to degradation of wall components, including mortar, lintels, non-stainless anchors, and fasteners, as well as a reduction of R-Value in certain types of insulation.
After a decade of planning and roughly three years of construction, a hospital consisting of 118,000 square feet of thin stone, 5,400 tons of steel, 19,700 yards of concrete, and 18 million feet of cable opened its state-of-the-art doors. Virtua Voorhees, “The Hospital of the Future” as it is known, is situated on 125 acres in Voorhees, a New Jersey suburb within the greater Philadelphia metropolitan area.
Taking a page directly from the “How to Effectively Combine Aesthetics and Function” manual, some innovative, new masonry products have successfully addressed industry concerns about moisture damage with traditional siding products. A few of these concrete products blend the classic and elegant craftsmanship of European design with patented technology to make a product that not only looks great, but also is environmentally conscious.
Moisture entering buildings has the potential to cause problems for the health and well being of the building inhabitants if the building envelope is not designed and constructed properly. Thus, the flashing of masonry for exterior openings is tremendously important to architects, engineers, and contractors.